Grounding, also called earthing, refers to a therapeutic technique that connects your body to the earth’s electrical properties with the intention of improving overall health and wellness. It may be able to influence healing abilities, enhance immune response, and a whole lot more. Some believe that grounding is the most important health discovery of recent times. While this may sound a bit new-age, earthing science provides some clarity on the subject, and we still have a lot to discover about it in general. Learn more about the science of grounding, its potential benefits, and how to start including this practice in your everyday life.
Keep in mind that the grounding we discuss in this article is not the same as when the term is used in mindfulness practices or yoga.
Grounding AKA Earthing Practices Explained
The practice of earthing includes connecting the human body to the earth’s electrical charge. It is a simple technique that can be done with or without additional equipment. All you need is time and patience.
This can be achieved outside through direct physical contact or inside through earthing devices like grounding mats or sheets. Establishing contact with the earth’s surface can produce calm and a reconnection with the planet.
What Are the Advantages of Grounding?
Aside from a connection to nature, grounding affects your body in several ways. It may be able to improve your health and well-being mentally, physically, and emotionally. Combining the effects can also lead to a better quality of life overall.
Research Thus Far Suggests Benefits, Including:
- Higher energy levels and less fatigue
- Better sleep quality
- Chronic pain reduction
- Lower blood pressure and regulation of hypertension
- Relief from chronic inflammation
- Faster recovery from post-exercise muscle damage
- Mood improvement and stress reduction
- Support for heart health
Grounding Physics and Science
What Is the Science of Grounding?
The science behind earthing and grounding states that it affects a living matrix shared between the body, all living cells, and the planet.
Earth has a field of negatively charged free electrons. Electrical conductivity exists throughout this matrix, and grounding connects your body to this natural energy source. Once connected, earthing neutralises free electrons in the body. As a result, it is believed it can boost the immune system, lower pain levels, improve blood flow, and promote various other health benefits along the way.
Grounding and Human Physiology
For now, there are very few scientific studies that pertain to earthing and its outcomes. Further research is needed to establish empirical evidence regarding the effects of grounding on the human body. However, circumstantial evidence and the small batch of available studies imply many potential positive side effects can result from consistently practising earthing techniques. Some benefits are mental and others physical.
Fatigue and Pain Reduction
A trial conducted in 2019 explored how massage therapists were affected by the use of grounding mats. Overall, they experienced improved physical functioning and elevated moods. A decrease in pain, fatigue and poor spirits was also noted. Whether chronic or occasional, we all experience pain and fatigue and earthing could help.
Inflammation Relief and Better Circulation
A review study from 2020 found that earthing had noticeable anti-inflammatory effects. Medical infrared imaging showed faster resolution of chronic inflammation, which can be painful. The review also suggests grounding can reduce or potentially prevent signs of inflammation after injury, including heat, redness, pain, swelling, and restricted function.
The same study cites research indicating that earthing increased circulation and blood flow to areas of the body like the face. This shows potential for quick recovery, improved heart health, and prevention of cardiovascular disease.
Improved Sleep Quality
A study from 2004 examined how grounding during sleep affects the body. It found that earthing while asleep reduced cortisol levels at night and helped synchronise them with your circadian rhythm. When combined, these changes lead to better sleep quality overall.
The same research also indicates reduced pain and lower stress could result from grounding while you sleep. Some people believe this is the ideal time because it provides you with many consecutive hours of earthing without interruptions, as is likely with other products and methods. In addition, your body undergoes natural regeneration and healing processes while resting.
Fast-Tracking Exercise Recovery
A study conducted in 2015 explored the effects of earthing patches and exercise recovery. It showed a significant change in repair and inflammatory blood markers. Simply put, grounding reduced muscle damage. It could potentially speed up recovery and lower soreness and pain associated with muscle damage. Pair these results with findings in the studies discussed above, and a pattern for decreased pain and faster repair starts to emerge.
When Should You Practice Grounding Techniques?
Grounding can be done whenever you feel pain, your moods are unbalanced, or you start experiencing the adverse side effects of the aforementioned ailments. You should conduct earthing techniques for several hours per day to get the best results. Consistent, uninterrupted practice helps keep your body balanced at all times so you can avoid experiencing adverse side effects if possible.
Be patient if you start incorporating earthing into your lifestyle and don’t notice a difference immediately. Like other treatments, it will likely take some time to achieve the full effect on your body’s system.
Where Can You Practice Earthing Techniques?
As mentioned, you can practise earthing outside and inside with help from a grounding mat or other device, whichever you prefer or are allowed.
Grounding exercises performed outside often offer the best results because they provide you with a direct connection to the earth’s surface. Regretfully, most people do not have time to get outdoors for several hours to lie down or walk without shoes.
Common Outdoor Methods:
- Swimming in a natural body of water
- Touching the ground with your hands
- Walking barefoot on the earth
- Lying on sand or grass
- Standing outside and touching your feet with your hands.
If you don’t have the luxury of going outside, grounding the human body can also be achieved inside. You can get a similar effect using earthing products that feature a connection cord and an adapter which plugs into a mains power outlet. They do not use electricity but instead connect to the grounding portion of your home’s electrical circuit. Some can also plug into a grounding wand when mains power is inaccessible.
Common Indoor Grounding Methods:
- Grounding patches
- Earthing sheets
- Earthing mats
- Grounding socks
- Grounding mouse pads
Grounding and You
Grounding or earthing exercises and techniques connect your body to the electrical conductivity of the earth. While results are still inconclusive, the most recent scientific research and integrative medicine indicate that earthing may be able to influence cardiovascular health, wound healing, reduced muscle damage and more.
Now that you have explored grounding science and its potential benefits, will you start practising earthing methods? Try getting outside and directly connecting with the earth’s surface and energy. Or, you could purchase one of the many grounding systems available on the market. You might experience significant improvement in your overall health and well-being.
Let us know what you think in the comments below.